Similar to the old holiday shopping axiom of "what to buy for the man who has everything," there isn't much more to say about Canelo Alvarez's greatness that hasn't already been heaped upon him in deserved fashion.
Alvarez, 31, fulfilled his goal of becoming the first Mexican boxer to be crowned undisputed champion when he stopped unbeaten Caleb Plant last weekend to unify all four super middleweight world titles.
The fact that the Mexican icon did so by winning four fights in the span of 12 months to make the division his own says everything one needs to know about what makes Alvarez special -- during a pandemic, no less -- when many top fighters are struggling to fight even twice in one year.
Alvarez was surgical in breaking down Plant's guard and elite defensive skills to once again prove he can fight any style needed in a given fight. The 11th-round TKO cemented even further why Alvarez, in an era filled with elite fighters, is pound-for-pound the best in show -- and it's not particularly close.
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After the conclusion of such a busy schedule, Alvarez plans to take some time off before a May return, likely on Cinco de Mayo weekend. The only suspense remaining is which direction Alvarez will head next in his quest to be great.
Recent teasing about a move back up to 175 pounds, where he knocked out Sergey Kovalev in 2019 to claim the WBO title, is nothing short of intriguing. Alvarez would give up a ton of size at light heavyweight, where unbeaten champions Artur Beterbiev and Dmitry Bivol reside.
Alvarez could just as easily stay at 168 pounds should he decide to remain aligned with PBC to defend his four-pack of titles against marketable names like David Benavidez and Jermall Charlo. And then there is the trilogy with middleweight titleholder Gennadiy Golovkin, which is undoubtedly the hope of streaming platform DAZN, which broadcasted Alvarez's previous six fights before Plant.
Whichever direction Alvarez decides to go, the crowds will follow as the sport's biggest draw continues a career arc unique to his own some 16 years after he first turned pro as an unknown teenager. Somewhere along the way, Alvarez will likely pass the great Julio Cesar Chavez Sr. for recognition as the greatest boxer in Mexico's decorated history.
| 1. Canelo Alvarez||57-1-2, 38 KOs||Undisputed super middleweight champion||--|
|The best in the world somehow keeps getting better. Alvarez became the undisputed king at 168 pounds by stopping unbeaten Caleb Plant and corralled all four titles in less than one year. Next up is some rest before a May return. |
|2. Naoya Inoue|| 19-0, 17 KOs|| Unified bantamweight champion||--|
|The Japanese "Monster" will return to fight in his native country for the first time in two years when he faces Aran Dipaen in December. The 28-year-old slugger can do it all and has carried his power with him each time he moves up in weight.|
|3. Errol Spence Jr.||27-0, 21 KOs||Unified welterweight champion||--|
|Surgery on a detached retina forced Spence out of a pay-per-view date against Manny Pacquiao in August and has raised concerns over the 31-year-old's future. When active, Spence has the making to be a generational talent, but injuries have slowed his progression.|
|4. Terence Crawford||36-0, 26 KOs||Welterweight champion||--|
|Boxing finally did Crawford right as the WBO made Shawn Porter the mandatory challenger for his title. Finally, Crawford will get his chance on Nov. 20 to test his skills against a fellow elite welterweight. "Bud," at age 34, enters the final fight of his Top Rank deal.|
|5. Tyson Fury||31-0-1, 23 KOs||WBC heavyweight champion||--|
|"The Gypsy King" returned from a near two-year absence to rise from the canvas twice in a thrilling 11th-round knockout of Deontay Wilder in their trilogy bout. Although Fury's hope of becoming undisputed champion in 2021 failed to happen, he remains the face of the division.|
|6. Oleksandr Usyk||19-0, 13 KOs||Unified heavyweight champion||--|
|The former undisputed cruiserweight champ upset the apple cart at heavyweight by convincingly outpointing Anthony Joshua in London. A contractually obligated rematch is up next, likely early in 2022, as Usyk continues his takeover of a second division. |
|7. Vasiliy Lomachenko||15-2, 11 KOs||Lightweight||--|
|Unified champion Teofimo Lopez Jr.'s decision not to grant Lomachenko a rematch has the Ukrainian wizard currently without a big fish to catch. At 33, Lomachenko reminded fans of his greatness when he finished Masayoshi Nakatani in June. He's set to face former title holder Richard Commey in December. |
|8. Teofimo Lopez Jr.||15-0, 12 KOs||Unified lightweight champion||--|
|It seems like a long time ago now that Lopez upset Lomachenko in their 135-pound summit. But with his bizarre soap opera with Triller now behind him, the 24-year-old Lopez will finally get his mandatory bout against George Kambosos Jr. in November.|
|9. Josh Taylor||18-0, 13 KOs ||Undisputed junior welterweight champion||--|
|"The Tartan Tornado" made a resounding statement when he dropped Jose Ramirez twice en route to a decision win in their 140-pound unification bout. The future is bright for Taylor, who can now add Teofimo Lopez Jr. as one of his potential suitors. |
|10. Shakur Stevenson||17-0, 9 KOs||Junior lightweight champion|
|The two-division champion produced the breakthrough performance his talent had regularly teased when he stopped Jamel Herring in October to claim a 130-pound title. At just 24, the southpaw is already being compared to a young Floyd Mayweather.|
Dropped out: Gervonta Davis
Honorable mention: Davis, Juan Francisco Estrada, Artur Beterbiev, Srisaket Sor Rungvisai, Yordenis Ugas